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RE: [sumo] almost a great trip

just so you all know, i tend to speak/wirte the first thing that comes to my mind, without thinking it through. 
many of you made good points, and as i think about it the problem is mostly me. i took my own general dislike of spending money and my desire to not do anything that might at any point involve me stepping on anyone's toes and transferred it to the inlaws and made it into something that might annoy them. now that i've thought about it, nobody (with the possible exception of my wife, but we'll see about that) would get annoyed by me spending a day in nagoya. this leaves really money and scheduling. between busses, trains and the cheap seats, that's probably what, 5000 yen? i could swing that. 
the other problem is the scheduling. as i've looked more closely at my schedule, i'm actually leaving to return to the states early wednesday. so really, as last day in the country, day 3 is out. day 1 isn't likely to offer any walk up tickets, so taht leaves day 2. 
so now that i've actually used my brain to think about it instead of just writing it off, i'm going to see if i can get there on day 2. thanks for thinking about it when i didn't, and don't hate my family for my lack of intelligence.


From: Clay Holden [mailto:cholden@kappa-joe.com]
Sent: Tue 6/28/2005 11:28 AM
To: Brinkman, Chad; sumo list
Subject: Re: [sumo] almost a great trip

On 6/27/05 9:12 AM, "Brinkman, Chad" <Monkey@4ezt.com> wrote:

> nobody else in my family gives a hoot about sumo, none of them. therefore,
> though i'll be in the area, i will definitely not be going to the basho. i may
> not even get to watch any on tv. i believe that my older brother-in-law would
> take me if i asked, but that would probably annoy everybody else in the
> family, so i'll just leave it alone. wah. wah for me.

This is really mind-boggling to me. Perhaps I'm just more lucky with my
family in Japan. My mother-in-law is a huge sumo fan, and it makes her smile
when she is watching it in Japan to know that her son-in-law is watching it
at the same time in the States.

My wife has no interest whatsoever in the Japanese films that I love (e.g.
kaiju-eiga, chambara, yakuza and kaidan movies), and doesn't really care all
that much about sumo either, but is quite understanding and supportive of my
love for them. The rest of my family there may not care as much as I do, but
they respect (and I suppose are rather amused by) my interest, and do their
best to make sure I get to enjoy them when I visit. Even send me related
gifts of Japan-only promotional materials, toys, t-shirts, etc. And while my
wife doesn't want to go to the movies with me in Japan, she wouldn't think
of saying that I couldn't go. My sister has already announced that she will
take me to see Takashi Miike's upcoming remake of "Yokai Daisenso" when we
visit this summer.

You might discuss the matter with your wife, and ask her how she would feel
if her family came to visit you here, and wanted to do or see something
special while they were there, only to be made to feel that it was a stupid
thing to want to do, because you had no interest.

My suggestion would be to research by yourself in advance the dates, times,
train and bus schedules, etc., and make it known that it is high on your
list of things to do on this trip. You don't have to bore them with stats,
or recite the latest banzuke, but letting them know that you are familiar
with the names of the rikishi, and sumo tradition, history, etc., may make
them more understanding. Possibly even a bit ashamed that you know and care
more about a Japanese cultural tradition than they do.

It might also be worth your time to inquire and write to some of the others
on this list and elsewhere who are planning to be there, so you could meet
and sit with people who share your passion when you get to the basho, and
probably enjoy it a whole lot more than if you went with an uninterested
brother-in-law in tow.

Remember, it's your trip too. If there's something you really want to do
when you visit Japan, you should do it. Letting family members or anyone
else make you feel that what you care about is unimportant just because they
don't share your interest is likely to both make you unhappy, and set you up
for further lack of consideration in the future.

You don't need to make a huge issue out of it with your family, just let
them know that attending one day of the basho is high on your agenda for
this visit, that any cooperation will be gratefully received, but that you
are prepared to make your own arrangements if it is inconvenient for them.

Hope it works out for you to make it to the basho, and look forward to one
of my visits coinciding with the schedule in the near future. Hopefully this
coming September...

And apologies if the foregoing is either too obvious, or if I sound like a
know-it-all oba-san offering unsolicited and unwanted advice.

Best wishes,


[EndPost by "Brinkman, Chad" <Monkey@4ezt.com>]